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Full text of "Annex "Jig" To Fourth Marine Division Operations Report, Iwo Jima - 4th Tank Battalion Report"

ANNEX JIG 

TO 

FOURTH MARINE DIVISION 
OPERATIONS REPORT 



IWO JIMA 

4th TANK BATTALION 

REPORT 




^ 

80 WAY 1945 



% V : 5/RrS-efb 

HEADQUARTERS, 
FOURTH TANK BATTALION, FOURTH MARINE DIVISION, 
FMF . , c/o FLEET POST OFFICE, SAM FRAIICISCO, CALIFORNIA. 



-=r-ial No. 34-45 



18 April, 1945 



UNClASSIFi 




" rora : 
Td: 

'Sab J ect : 
Reference 



1. 



The Commanding Officer. 
The Commanding General, Fourth Marine Division. 

Cper-tion Report, I wo Jima. 

(a) Uiv 30P#l--45. 

(b) Special Ur and Gunnery Target Mat), I wo Jima, 

1: 10. 000. 

(c) Table of Organisation, F-79. 

In accordance with paragraph two (2), reference 



{ q) , the following report is submitted. 



?L.AF';i: T G V: T D PREPARATION 



1. Training period between the Tinian Operation and 
bhe Iv/o Jima Operation was largely devoted to acquainting person- 
nel of this organization with 'new equipment. Due to the fact 
that Tanks'^ lV S. Army, medium, N4A2, were replaced by Tanks, U.3. 
Army, medium, K4A3, approximately forty (40) per cent of the train- 
ing time was spent on basic subjects such as driving and maint- 
enance. Oonconitant. with the driving and maintenance training, 
Instruction in the 500 series FK radio equipment anc! the mechan- 
ised flame thrower E 4- -5 was carried out. 

2. The K4A3 tanks were equipped with all the necessary 
instruments for indirect fire and a school in indirect fire tech- 
nique was conducted by the Fourteenth Marines., Due to the time 
factor this school was abandoned, but all tank companies fired, at 
least two indirect fire problems. 

3. Approximately twenty (20) per cent of the training 
neriod was devoted to weapons firing rnd gunnery. All personnel' 
of this organisation fired their individual weapons on at least 
three (3) different occasions, All tank crews fired all tank wea- 
pons, and all crews had a minimum of two (2) days on the range. 

4. Approximately thirty (30) per cent of the training 
period devoted to J n fan try-Tank team training. Conferences 
T ^re held by each t^nk company's officers with the infantry off- 
icers of their respective combat teams. In^these conferences bas- 
ic instruction in tank capabilities, limit"! flblMfld jap^ration 



'f, m 



-1- 




■:-re given, infantry-tank coordination, liaison and communication 
jscus^ed, and nlans for the It-jo Jima operation drav/n ur). A.11 in 
■ntry ccr/manies received schooling at the tank Dark in the use o: 
:e tank telephone, arm and hand signals, target designation etc. 
allowing this indoctrination school small unit oroblems were con-- 
;cted, and. later oroblems which included firing were held with 
. --ch BIT. 

5. ^Proximately ten (1C) oer cent of the training t>er 
:d ks^ devoted to athletics a .d ohysical conditioning. ~rogr?ms 

in baseball, softb^ll, basketball, touch football, swimming, tennis 
id t" r -ck vere conducted. This organization did ..ot participate 

in the rehearsal conducted in the training area. 

II ,r CV7" ""T TC O^CZ^IW. 



1. "ank counprne ™ere emlarked in ten (10) To f 's. 

"-'e^dquarters and -«=rvice Clorroa iy dIus Tank Maintenance "latoon, 
Ordnance lor^any, attached were embarked on the - r A 190 and the 
T -"'?ttallon Commander r nd thr ; -e (3) enlisted men were embarked on 
the Li vision Command ShiD 33. Thi^ organization did not nart- 

iciDate in thf forward area rehearsal exceot for a communication 
check. The LdM's executed required control exercises, but did not 
beech. 



Ill i-I r To 5rlR^ I f CV!i:' T T T 

1. The assault tan];, corm^nie^ (Companies " V and " T r ) 

were loaded as o?r table below. Germany 11 was attached to ^.CT 
^•5 °nd Uonna.iy M to ^.TT ?3 . 



V M A II 



LSM 
Serial N r i 



11 



12 



13 



L-SH 
tfo . 



323 

70 
74 



In it 
Embarked 



4th?lat. 
3rd?lat . 
Co,Hq. 

IstFlat . 
or df la t . 

Snd^lat . 

:o,Hq. 



V ehi cl e s Smbark ed 



3 I ■'edium Tanks 

1 Flame Thrower Tank 

1 Flail Tank, i-xecC ' s Tank 

3 I- edium Tanks 
3 I edium Tanks 

3 ! edium Tanks, 1 Flame 

Thrower Tank 
•1 Dozer Tank. C. 



P"o s i t i on 
on LD 



Center 
Blue Beach 
Cne 

left Flank 
rlue Eeach 
One 



ight Flark 





Weretion Report, Iwo Jima. SerNo . 34-45 , dtd 18 Apr 45 



COMPANY "C' 1 



Serial No: 
14 



Unit 
Embark fed 



V ehi c 1 e s Tmb ark e d 



Position 
on LD 



15 



RightFlank 
Yellow Be a 
ch -Two. 

Left Flank 
Yellow Bea- 
ch Two. 

Yellow 
Peach One . 



216 :lstFlat. : 3 Medium Tanks, 1 Flame 

Thrower . Tank 
2o,¥ t q. . 1 lozer Tank, G.C Tank 

126 :2ndPlat , ■: 3 I'iedium Tanks 
3rd? let . ; 3 Medium Tanks 



211 :4thFla.t. : 3 Medium Tanks, 1 Flame 
: Thrower ^ank. 

!o : Fg. : 1 v lall. T ^n k , ^xecC 1 s Tan k , 

2. This loading -clan maintained the tactical unity of 
the tank units, and \w s so designed to .permit tank units to move 
to 'the support of assigned BIT 1 s without confusion on the beach. 

3. The six- (5) s carrying the assault tank compan- 
ies were to be in position on the LD by K plus- 10 °nd were to con- 
stitute -the sev-anth wave . They were on call by the ^.CT. CJornpanders 
and. were to be dispatch -d by Transport division Control. 

4. The reserve tank c crop any ( Comoan$\ "3" ). with the re- 
trievers of the assault tank companies , the Battalion Command Tank 
and one spare tanls was embarked on LS^'s number 48, 59, 239, and 
145, and was to stand by in LSI 5 .-.re a % *a.n. 



5. 



Company 



A H 



was dispatched at 1003 Log day, and larn 
ed on Beach Blue One at 1020. Company "C'was dispatched at 0948, 
Hue landed on. Yellow Beaches at 1005. 



UBBATIVE LF CTiZRt.lIU: 



1. Pose day: Previously planned arrangements failed, where- 
in Company 3 " of ( 3eco nd 4rme;red Amphibian Tractor Battalion), 
would pass beach information to Company " C" of this organisation 
°nd Company "A. 1 ', Second Armored Amphibian Tractor Battalion would 
give " information. -to Company " A". Company "A" received word that 
the =>ree 200 yards inland and South of Beach Blue One was mined. 
Company "C ! ' } beach reconnaissance units reported Yellow Beaches 





t,l<. v «-; Op? ration Report, Iwo Jima. 3er' T ^. 34-45, dtd 18 Apr 45. 



too soft for lan cling of tanks ang beach exits rained and blocked bv 
shell craters . These units advised that the landing of tanks on 
Yellow Beaches bo delayed until suitable beaching areas and exit 
routes could be found. The Lili' s carrying Company V" vehicles '■ 
beach 4 d in exactly the opposite order* from the plan shown in the 
table in paragraph III, 1; this caused confusion and made it nec- 
essary for tank Platoons to cross over in order to suooort the BLT's, 
to which they were assigned. The tanks landed under a hail of 
artillery, mortar and anti-tank fire; all three LS15' s wer§ hit and 
damaged . The Gomo&ni r " A" dozer cut a road through the first ter- 
race 1 ril end from Beach Blue One, but hit a large horn mine and re- 
ceived, three l^re'e caliber direct mortar hits. The dozer was com- 
pletely d: stroyed. Company " A" tanks procede-d inland in a column , 
Picking their way through shell carters . They encountered a mine 
field IOC yards inland, and were immobilized. The Company " L " tanks 
fired into' the cliff vicinity 1?A 1*5 D and L, 166 A and B and 183 
r, V, ^, and X, and into pill b©x?s in rear of Blue beaches. kt 
*Tow plus "five (-6) hours th~ First, Third, «=nd Fourth Platoons of 
lonroany "?'' If :id~-d on B- ach Blue Cn e tc reinforce Company "A"; two 
--^sdq^s.rtf rs tanks of Company "3" and th« Company " V retriever 
landed with this group. Intense artillery aed mortar fire contin- 
ued all day ? d by Few plus seven (7) hours, seven Company "A. 11 tanks 
♦were twed dewn and five (5) had been knocked out. One Company 
"B" t*ak v:a.« stuck in a shell hole, and one was hit by 47 mm AT 
fire and burned. At Row plus seven (7) hours the Commanding Officer, 
Executive Officer s.nd .First r latocn Leader of Company " A M were woun- 
ded a"d evacuat d and the Commanding Offic-r of Company "B !i assum- 
ed command of all tanks in the- zon* of action of RCT 25. T~nks in 
tliis ~C m zone hivcuac-d in an area 25 to 100 y°rds in rear ef the 
front U.ifs. By nightfall Company "V had sustained, thirty (30) 
casualties. On the Yellow Ef aches the tanks of Company " C" had. 
great difficulty due to the loose volcanic ash which immobilized 
many vehicl s and r-.- stricted the movement of others. LSM 216 bea- 
ched at its assigned point- on the right if lank of Ye 1 lew Two, and 
the first tank off bogged down less than five feet from the ramp 1 s 
end, blocking the remaining tanks in that vessel. L31C 216 retract- 
ed and be a. cnec. again about 200 yards south where foot reconnaissance 
showed that tanks would also bog down. The LSH in the meantime had 
broached en the beach, and it took thirty (30) minutes for it to re- 
tract the s.cend time. At 1245 LSM 216 beached on Yellow One, but 
the sand was to- . soft, so it withdraw for the third time, and at 
1300 beache d again discharging its remaining vehicles. L3M* s 126 
and 211 bi ached at their assigned spots and were able to discharge 
their vehicle -with little difficulty. Three tanks from LSY 126 
struck mines lc *s than 150 vards f rem • the beach, and the remaining 
three moved te the support of BLT 1/23 finally reaching the No . 1 




Operation ^.--pert, Iwc Jima. 5er'.'o . 34-45, dtd 18Apr45 



Airfi Id Juit south cf the Ta st-* r -st runway turning p^ron. °he 
tanks frem L^I--. 211 working slowly among mines and shell hole-p re- 
ached the -.irfield at about neon. The flail which w<es eri this 
LS^ bocro- .c d -,v-n in soft send ju^t i If the teach. The tanks from 
LSI-' 216 " ? lso finally made their way tc th: Airfield knocking out 
several pillboxes \- ith the CE l-,K I flame threw- r. > T c tanks w-~re 
able to op-rate, in thr- zo:io of 3LT 2/23 due to soft s*nd though 
sev-rel erforts wort, msec- tc. pot vehicles into that zone . El o von 
(11) tanks anc; tvo (2) flame throving tanks from Company "C ''op- 
rated v.ith BIT 1/23 until dark wh>.n they te-k up positions in 
hull defilade just off the .ope of ths airfield in T.4 164 X and Y 
L3M 59, carrying the i.eend Platoon of Company "£", th<- Company 



II r ll 



do zer 
low On 



nd 

t; 



th battalion Commander tank, w-^s erclercd to b- ; ach on 



Yol- 



r in force 



. mo a.n v 



ii it 



at 1400. This LSI' vr?s forced to 



withdraw duo 
or- r f whi oh 
Cempaoy : ' C" . 



tc eeorter firs after discharging only two vehicles, 
bogr-o down on th-- b-ech. The other vehicle joined 



25 v 



2 . 

ii 'i 



vbo hpc- 
s wour.^ e °nd 



w c s r r; 



d 



time 
Co idt) any 



th- As 
ii i ii 



9 snore 
i a 1 9 o t 
?nc th. 



?1up Cn? Ipy: The Comm^odinF Officer of Com- 
c c : mm and of nil t°nks in th- zone of RCT 
. : vacua t- r1 early in the morning, and th; Bn-3 
tr> ^seum- com rand of Company "B" . L .t the same 
?n-3 ■ rd r--d n shore to take command of 

Br- tt alien p - ; crnnaissance and Liaison Off ic-'-r 



of 



J e mp a iy 



These officers r : ach -:d th; 



to be >ecv.tive Officer 

beach at about noon. Cempaoy " v' sr>-?nt most of the day reorganiz- 
ing rnd. re tri '-ving . c »m?g :• d -nd bogged down vehicles, and had eight 
op e rat iv vehicles by dark. Tight (8) tanks from Company "E" sup- 
ported ^CT 25 firing on t-rp-ets of opportunity. Co rap any "C" 1 s 
eleven (11) operational vhicl. s were divided into three (-3) pla- 
toons which led the assault coopani- s of RCT 23 across Airfield 
*-o. 1. Those vehicles could not n* gctiate- the bluff on the o'J sid-^ 
of the airfield, eec a.ttimpt? to advance up th r taxiways toward 
Airfi Id. To. 2 wer- stopped by mines in TA. 1*5 C and 181 X. Three 
Company "C" v? hides w _r- kn^cke-d cut, two by min •* 8 and one. by hea- 
vy mcrt n r fire. The r \ ee.j nine- 1 vehicles from ISM 59 landt-d. and join- 
ed Company M C" at nifhtfall. 



3. Do? r lus Two Lays: Companies " V and "B" supported 

ROT 25 with all operational vehicles firing into the cliffs to the 



front and destroying pill boxes anc' caves, 
vehicl.s \?i re knock, d out by 47 mm AT fire 
These ccrrprni, s bivouac-; d in 



v ?h 1 c 1 - s of C e r.n any 



II ry i) 



Two (2) Company "B" 
and two thrcx? tracks. 
1S5 for the night. Twelve (12) 



soopcrt' d. the att 



-5- 




MffiWffifl 

Subject: Ooer ation Report, Iwo Jima. SerNc. 34-45, dtd 18Aor45. 



the hlp-h ground across from Airfield . 1 via the road, running 
frcm £30 through TA 181 Y after this rc&d was cleared of mines. 
The do? r t^ek ov.eh-e' a road to the ridpve in TA 182 K where it was 
knocked cut by 47 be AT fir:. Tht: Battalion leal n ton an ce Cf floor 
landed with nine (9) m . ehanics to survey the damage and to aid the 
Comoanie a i i saint-; nance work. The- Assistant Platoon Leader of the 
Tank Ordnance Plate on also landed with nine (9) enlisted men to aid 
the- Battalia e raintcriance Officer. 

4. Dog Flu 3 Three lays: Companies "A" and "B" suooort- 
od the attack of HOT 25, but were limited by cliffs and rough ter- 
rain, one s.-. ction of tanks cleared seme enemy treoos from the area, 
adjacent to the East Beat Basin. Co mo any 11 C" was attached to RCT- 
21, and eoerated in the seme area as or needing day. Two (2) tanks 
w~re knecke-d cut by 4? mm AT fire. 

5. Dog Plus Four Days: Comoanie s "A" and "P" oerform- 
-d the ?rmo missions as the day oroc--eding. Comoany "0" worked uo 
to the south'-rn end of Airfield ^o. 2 at TA 182 CI, and from posit- 
ions on the runway destroy -d e-n^my oositions in TA 182 B. One tank 
was knocked out' by 47 mm A" fire. The Battalion Commander and his 
liaison oe.rty landed at about noon, and st uo'hls CP in the Coiro- 
any " T' bivouac area at T A 164 Y. Two enlisted men from Tank Ord- 
nance ^la/toon landed with maintenance equipment. 

6. Dog Plus ^ive Days; Comoany M B" sent four tanks to 
suopert BIT 1/C4 at the T.-st Boat Basin.- All operational vehicles 
of Companies u A" and " C" (20 tanks in all) were placed under the 
coir ma; .a •' f the Commandieg Officer of C euro any " C M to oartlcioate in 
massed -tank attack, ordered by higher echelon, with the ouroose of 
securing Airfield e'e. 2. All available tanks of the Third and Fif- 
th Tank B r tt ali.>n a w.-re. to oar ticioato in this attack which was un- 
der the .cc mnand of th<- Commanding Officer, Fifth Tank Battalion. 
The p-fv. rrl ole.n wps for the Fourth Tank Battalion to attack down 
the ri grit -runway ar.c the Third and Fifth T*nk Battalions to move 
down the lift runway. As it turrrd out the only route on to the 
Airfield was the- one mace by Comoany C" sevral days previous from 
CR 2^0 te the runway at TA 182 Or. The 'morning was soent in clear—- 
ing thi'3 rout£ of mines x r. rid in untangling traffic Jams caused by 
the canalizing of som^ s-. v nty tanks into this narrow corridor. A 
column of tanks extend d. from one airfield to the- next Eventually 
eight (8) tanks from Ccenoany "A" got onto the runway and oregressed 
as far as TA 183 B and 200 V destroying four (4) AT guns and tem 
(10) oill 'boxes. Two tanks v.ere destroyed by 47 mm , AT fire and 
three dame.g,d. Small numbers of vehicles from the Third and Fifth 
Tank Battel! ens also eventually reached theH£tftV frn^^vanced 





Report, Iwo Jim?. SerNo. 34-45, dtd 18Apr45 



lovri' me 'Trrrr~ rttni 
was secured. Company 
Third T~nk 3attalion j 
men from Keadcuar ters 

7. Dog Plus Six 
the day in maintenance 
Boat B' n sin and six (6) 



or 



all practical purposes 
u- was relieved at dark by 
nd reverted to HOT 23. Two 
and Service Company landed. 



Airfield No. 2 
elements of the 
CP maintenance 



Days: Company ".4" was in reserve and spent 
Company "B" sent two tanks to the East 
tanks stood by to support BLT 3/24, but were 
not called on. Coir.pp.ny "C" supported the attack of BLT 3/23 again- 
st Hill 382. These tanks fired close support missions from TA 183 
G and 200 T J where they were held up by an extensive minefield. Thrc 
officers and twenty two (22) enlisted men from Headquarters and Ser- 
vice Company landed and set up the Battalion dump. One officer and 
eleven (11) enlisted men from, the Tank Ordnance Platoon also landed, 

8. Dog Plus Seven Days: Six (6) tanks from Company "A H sup- 
ported the attack of ROT 2b by firing at designated pill boxes and 
cfl.vrs. Company "B" was in reserve and spent the day in maintenance. 
Company "C" again supported the attack on Hill 382. Engineers were 
unable to clear the minefield in TA 200 W and two tanks were knock- 
ed out. Three officers rnd ten (10) enlisted men from Headquarters 
and Service Company landed on Blue Beach One and the Battalion CP 
was established at TA 1S5 0, 

9. Dog Plus Eighi; D«ys* Company "A" performed the same mis- 
sions as the preceding day. Second Pin toon, Company "B" reverted 
to Company "B" control *nd that Company supported the attack of RCT 



23 on Hill 382 4 



!omr>any '* C" was in reserve and spent the da.v in 



maintenance. One officer and twenty one (21) enlisted men from 
Headquarters and Service Company landed i 

10. Dog Plus Nine Days: All Company "A" tanks supported the 
attack of the left BLT of RCT 25 firing at pill boxes and one -block- 
house which effectively withstood 75 mm fire. Terrain limited tank 
operation to the zone of this BLT. Third Platoon, Company "B", fired 
close-in 20 minute preparation prior to King hour in the zone of 
BLT 2/23. Company "E" fired supporting missions on Hill 382 and 
the cliffs and ridged *-.c ohe right.. Company "C" was again in res- 
erve. 

11. Dog Plus Ten Days: The remainder of Headquarters and 
Service Company, the Tank Ordnance Platoon and remaining Tank Bat- 
talion equipment landed. Company "A" sent two tanks to the right 
BLT of ^CT 25 where they fired close support missions. Six (6) 

-7- 





Subject: OolrlGtAi i HeDort, Iwo Jima, SerNO. 34-45, dtd 18Apr45 

operated with the left 3LT of RCT 25 against t&e.s.txjong block house 
encountered the previous day. Approximately 800 gallons of flame 
thrower fuel and 3ix hundred rounds of 75mm ammunition were fired 
at the block house; but the infantry was unable to secure it. One 
tank was- knocked out by a land mine; evldentalj during the night of 
D / 9 - D / 10 the enemy remined the trail used the ^receding day. 
Company "B H wes attached to RCT 24, but no tanks were called for, or 
used, due to the extremely rough terrain. Company "C ,r remained in • 
reserve. 

12. Dog Plus Eleven Days: Commanding Officer, Company "A", 
resumed command of that unit and the Assistant Bn-3 returned to 
Headquarters and Service Company. Six tanks from Company "A", a 
flame thrower and a dozer supported the attack of the left BLT of 
^CT 25. A shape charge was thrown on the dozer, but with no ap-orec- 
iable damage. 1^,000 gallons of flame thrower fuel and considerable 
75mm were again fired at the blockhouse i Three Company "A" tanks 
supported the right BLT in the same manner as the preceding day. 
First Platoon, Comoany "B" , supported the attack of BLT 2/24 and 
Second Platoon supported BLT 3/24. 500 gallons of flame thrower 
fuel were fired at a blockhouse, in the zone of BLT 2/24. Company 
"C" remained in reserve, 

13. Dog Plus Twelve Days: Comoany "A" was in. reserve and de- 
voted the day to maintenance . Conroany "B" moved its bivouac area to 
TA 183 P. The First Platoon, Conroany "B", supported BLT 2/24, and 
the Third Platoon suDnor'jed BLT 3/24. 500 gallons of nanalm were 
fired at the same blockhouse fired uoon the ^receding day. Company 
tt C M attached to RCT 23 fired close support missions in the vicinity 
of Turkey Knob, using the large flame throwers to advantage. Com- 
pany U C H bivouac area was moved to TA 182 Y. 

14. Dog Plus Thirteen Days: Conroany "A" moved bivouac area t« 
TA 165 J and remained in reserve. The First Platoon, Comoany fl B M , 
supported BLT 2/24 and Second Platoon supported BLT 3/24. Ctm-oany 
M C H carried out the same mip -vions as on the preceding day. The 
Conroany "C" dozer was knocked out by a mine. 

15. Dog Plus Fourteen Days: Four (4) tanks, and two (2) flame 
throwers from Conroany " A ,! worked on a by-uassed pocket in the zone 
of HCT 25, destroying c^ves and pillboxes and expending over 1,500 
gallons of f'lrme thrower fuel. The remaining Company "A" tanks stood 
by to supDort the attack of RCT 25 if called. Company ,r B" furriised 
close* fire suprcrt to the atts.ck-o.f ROT 24%, .Company rt C ,r carried 

out the same mission as on the preceding day. 

16. DTg Plus Fifteen Days! Fur (4) tanks and one. flame 
thr:wer f i» m Cmioany "A M again operated against the prcket in RCT 
25 f fi- zt^ne -f action and three (3Ktanke ^pei«^fl^jiJ.£h Jt*l£ J^ef t 







f r y_ -j _ _ _ _ 

Operation Robert, I wo Jima. 'Scrllo . 34-45, dtai8Aor45 . 

BLT. Th- Fourth Plptoon, Company "B", support - d PLT 3/24 and the 
Third Platoon supported 2/24- . On? flame thrower, the Company " E " 
dozer and one tank were knocked out by mines; this was the last 
dozer operative in the Battalion. Two Platoons of Company "C H 
^tterrot-r d to drive east toward the sea dov/n a corridor running th- 
rough TA 201 !':, 0, T, ¥ , R, Q, Victor, and T .Tilliam. The: tanks 
proc ..d: a east down th^ road running from CR 331 to RJ 189, but 
at TA 2C1 M th'y v. r-. forced off the road by large shell craters 
and a mine field. These t*nks took up positions in field in' south- 
east of TA 201 M end fired 9t targets cf opportunity. The rough 
terrain would net permit tanks to" advance beyond. T A 201 M without 
the aid of a tank dozer, and no dozer was available. 

17. Dog Plus Sixteen Cays: Company "A" continued to operate 
in the occks-t in RCT 25 zone of action. The First Platoon, Company 
"3", fired a 15 minute close-in preparation for BLT 1/24. The Third 
Platoon support -d the attack of BLT 2/24. -One flame thrower tank 
Ttfas knocked out by a mine, Company "0" with the aid of a dozer 
borrow fro: th-/ Flf tie T-nk Battalion pushed -through to TA 201 S 
where they were halt. ..a by a large mine field-. One tank was destroy- 
ed by, a mine at th: RJ in TA.201 L. 

13. Dog Plus 3eve- iuo,en Days: One platoon cf Company "A" 
supported the attack of left ELT of RCT 25 while another platoo; 

continued to mop up the previously mentioned pocket. The First 
Platoon, Company " B" > supported the attack of BLT 2/24. Company 
" C" operated In the same arc? as on the preceding day, but was 
,again halted by mines after a .short advance. 

19. Dog Plus Eighteen Days* Company " A" performed the same- 
missions as tht Pr ceeding day. The Second Platoon, Company "3", 
furnish d , closo r ir r support for BLT 3/24 throughout the day. Com- 
pany M C" with the aid of the Fifth Tank Battalion dozer pushed th- 
rough to th-- rid*?? in TA 201 T. One tank was knock -d out by a mine, 
the dozr was damaged by large caliber mortar fire, and one tank 
was set fire, but net • damag- d appreciably, by a napalm bomb from 
support aircraft „ 

20. Doer Plus Nine tt en Days: On* platoon of Company "A" sup- 
ported the attack of the left BLT of RCT 25. One platoon stood by 
in the c nt r BLT 1 s zo.n e of action. One platoon proceeded up -the 
beach road' i.i front cf tfcu- right BLT, and support- d that units 
drive to^-rd the s-.a. Company "B" towed a sled mounted 7.2 inch 
rocket lpuno.her into the zone of BLT 1/24 and fired twenty (20) 

-9- 





-pert, Iwo Jima. 3e rNo. 34-45,dtd 18Apr45. 



rockets. After rgin : - rs r r;.ov.:d mines from the road running from 
CR 331 to RJ 189 Company "C"iroved down to the latter point and pave 
effective fire- support to ^CT 23. 

• • • ♦ * 

21. Teg Plus Tvr :ity Days: One platoon of Company " V assist- 
ed in th: acopin;:. up of RCT 25 'g zone cf action. Company "B" was 
in ros.rvi. Cn e' pia toon of Company 11 C" proceed; d to RJ 189 and 
fired supporting fir^.s for RCT 9 against caves in TA 202 M. 

22. Dog r lus Twr-'ity-Oni- Days: All tank Companies wire on 
stand-by, but did not op ..race. 

23. Dog Flur? Twenty-Two Days? Same conditions or vailed as 
on th.- proc;;din£ dry. Company "E" turned ever twt.lv- (12) op-r-' 
ation^l tanks to the Fifeh Tank Battalion at 1030; six (6) of these 
tanks were returnee"! at '.V?00. Company " C" turned ovor two flame th- 
rowertaqks to the Fifth Taek Battalion. 

24. Do<? Plus Twenty- -Thr? e Days: Ona platoon of Company "A" 
plus th; repair d D v •? i from Company "c" operat-d in support of RCT 
25 in TA 1£5 B and C. Companies "E" and "0" remained on stand-by. 

25. Dog ^lus T«, a : jy--Four Days: Battalion embarked all oper- 
ational tfnks l'-Sf on j pj.atocn and the two flam-- throwers from 
Company "A", th twe ± 1 ...eo throw -:rs from Company "C n (loaned to 
Fifth Tenk Battalion) -ec 1 fth tanks from Company "B" (also loaned 
to Fifth Tank Battalion' aboard the L3D#2 along with four officers 
and seventy five (75) '■: r.Iiot d men. 

26. Dog Plus Twoi i;y- -?i v-r Days: Company "A" supported the 
attack of RCT 25 with two tanks and one flame thrower. Company "B" 
with a_ tank and a flam throw- r borrowed from Company "A" supported 
BLT 3/24 in reducing th<- pocket along the East Coast. Remainder 

of Company "C* mb-rked aboard the APA 228. 

27. Dog Plus Twenty-Six .Days : One flame thrower tank was 
turn-d ovr to Third T°nk Battalion after Company "A" conducted 
school for that Battalion. Company " loaded its remaining tanks 
aboard LoD#2 and its personnel w. re embarked aboard APA 178. Com- 
pany "3" receiv d four (4) tanks back from the Fifth Tajik Bsttalion 

28. Dog Flus Tv/cn fcv-oevc-n Days: Company "B" loaded four (4) 
tanks aboard LSD-,/2 a.^d embarked r training personnel aboard APA 233. 
Headquarters and o^rvict Company embarked aboard the ATA 233. Two 
tanks =»?id t ,T e fl^r;.: throw. --rs were left v ' 1 th Jlte »ffl4.^th -Tank Battal- 
ion. One flae; thrower and two M4A2 tanks |ffi*f^~A ^0^7"- ' " 



Wf^^lB^ ' ■ ' ''Ov'zrFtlon Report, Iwo Jiroa. Sex&o. 34-45, dtd 18Apr45 



which had b ion badly damaged were left with the Third Tank Battal- 
ion. Of the fifty- -six (56) tanks (dozers, retrievers, flails and 
flame tnorvjers) embarked for the operation thirty-eight (38) were 
reembarked at th: end; seven (7) were turned over to other units 
and eleven (11) w..re destroyed. 



V 



collects and r s c o kiien d at i on 



1. Personnel losses were higher in this oucraticn 

than in any proceeding one in which this organization has been 
engager]. The. tabl:. b . low shows personnel losses for the operation: 



AUTHORIZED T. 0. STRIT'GTH 



Cffioer enlist- d Officer Enlist 



Officer enlist 'd 



Marine 35 
:T avy 1 
ACTUAL oTRI—'TU 



9). 

OF 



EMBARKATION 88I;EC4'' . 



36 594 



Combat Echelon 



Officer Enli^tc d 
Marine 37 ~ 581) 

• T avy 1 11) 

Rear Echelon 

Office r Enliated 
Marine 1 55) 

Navy • - -j 

Attachments - TkCr dPlt •- P3 a me 
Throv^r Repairman and Obs..rv^r 



Marine 

Navy 

Army 



Officer 



1 



cl 



50) 
1 •- 



38 



-11- 



56 



31 



42 679 




Subject: 
cverstr::'C 



Operation Report, I wo Jlma. SerNo . 54-45, dtd 18Apr45 

IT TJ I. 



C'l FATS C F g5H^g^; , r.C£j^l : LCt4<:. | 

Crf 13. r E.iiJ s fr a 
Marine 3 54-) 

" T avy - 2) 

CASUALTIES 19FE345 - 18KAR45 



Officer Enlisted Officer Enl? 



56 



Marin 
Mavy . 



: riLLEI EV) 


S?(EV) 


T .n?(M0T-SV) :MI3SIi'G: TOTAL : 


: 


■ E: C: E 


C : E 


C 


E > 0« 


E: 




: 1 


22: 7: 60 


: 7 


3 


18 { 


: 11 


107: 




. 1: : 






3 t 




4- 



PATTAI PERSC^ /EL LOSS^o 28DSC44 ~ 18I.AR45 

_____ T T-- liqt ,^ Cf fi - r 

S3 1 



Killed 1 

Evacua ted 

3?ttl- Casualties 7 

Sick Casualties 

(Incl ?! ;M[v Snrcuts) 

Transfer re d 

TkCrd^lt. 2 
Amy Observer 1 
Cell: -\ Tr^ir.in.Q- 
Rear Echelcn Tr. 



60) 
9: 



Unlisted Officer 
23) 

) 

^> 
i 

) 



:nl : 



69) 



)- 



11 127 



30) 
) 

3) 
2) 



35) 



RETUR1TEL TO DUTY 19FEB^ 5^ JL8KAR45 
Marines ^ 
REP LACS.'. Ei- T3 



12) 



)- 



13 



Marine (CP) 

EFFECTIVE STRE.-.'0-TH DATE OF 
RE S.I ARK ATI 0>: 18:UR45~ 



1) 



Combat Echc Ion 
"arine 
a vy 



Offic.-r Enlistjd 



1 



501) 
10)" 

-12- 



511) 





frHkion Report, I wo Jim*. Ser- To . 34-45, dtd 18Ar>r45. 



Officer Enlisted Officer Enlisted Offic-r Enlis 



Rear Echelon 



Marine 



Navy 



Attachments * 
"?avy 



53) 

) 
) 
) 



53 



* Army Observer detached - 12 March, 1945. 

Tank Ordnance Platoon detached - 13 March, 1945. 

RECAPITULATION 



122 casualties Battalion - 122/687 or .17? 
killed Battalion - 24/687 or .034 



Q opto. ?ny "A" 

casualties 
killed 

C orrroany "?" 

c^su^lties 
killed 



Cor/roany 



c^u^ltles 
killed 



48 CASUALTIES 

Company - 48/176 or .286 

Ccunsny - 6/176 or .034 



Con/nany - 29/178 or .15? 

Conroany - 5/178 or .028 

41 CASUALTIES 

Cormcny - 41/179 or .229 

Company - 12/179 or .06? 



DISTRIBUTION 



1 ) (run shot 

2) Land Uines 

3) Burns 

4) Recoil "":ch 



11 

10 

8 
6 



34 565 



5) Mortal *■ Arty 79 



6) Combat Fatigue 3 

7) Grenade 2 

8) Strain 2 

9) Jao Kortar Fuse 1 



2. 



^ ~o» v ~~ rn 4 -^ -"r^k leisures encountered on I T /0 JIMA 
were unusual i.-, th r t th:y closely resembled orthodox anti-tank doc- 
trine Of Oth?-*" ""T A QS. 



(a) :."ine fields were extensive and very effective. They 



-13- 





UNCtASSiFM 

Subject: Operation Report, Iwo Jima. SerNo . 34-45, dtd!8Apr45 . 



were v 11 located, covering all feasible routes of abroach for tanks 
into the interior cf the enemy defenses. The fields' were located 
with a vicv/ cf canalizing tanks into narrow areas* .yhich were cover- 
ed by anti-t-nk guns. The fields themselves were covered by anti- 
tank* guns, so that reraeval cf mines did hot allow easy aecess to in- . 
tericr positions. The fields were generally covered with automatic 
weapons, so that mine removal was extremely difficult. Mines were 
generally deeply buried so that they were hard tc detect, and in 
many cases tanks, crossed over fields only to have following tanks 
detonate the mines. Most fields consisted of shallowly buried 
yardstick nines under which were unfused aerial bombs of 150 to 
250 pounds. The yardstick mine itself was sufficient to break tank 
tracks, and' when it exploded it detonated the bomb which complete- 
ly destroyed the tanks. A terracotta mine larg:r than the standard 
Japanese anti-tank mine was also extensively used. This mine was 
extremely hard to detect, and had sufficient explosive power to des- 
troy a t^nk suspension system. One and two pronged horn mines were 
encountered, but were 'net particularly effective as they were easily 
detected p.r.d avoided. 

(b) Anti-tank guns were generally of the standard 47 mm 
typ p , but some large caliber dual purpose guns were encountered. 
As Ptat'd above, anti-tank g.uns were well sited, and their fire 
was vnry effective. The 47 mm had no difficulty penetrating tank 
armor except on the front slope Plate and the turret. Anti-tank 
gunnery was generally excellent. The gun positions were usually 
well constructed and well concealed. Guns ha<3 good fields of fire 
and good alternate fields cf fire, Host guns had alternate posit- 
ions, in some cases several, and this allowed the enemy to shift 
guns, so th^t located positions would be empty the next day, and 
our tanks were surprised by fire from previously undetected guns. 
Fire discipline of 47 mm gun crews was excellentj "and few erratic 
or waste rounds were observed. Japanese medium tanks with 47 mm 
guns were dug, in and used as anti-tank guns. 

(c) In lieu of the magnetic anti-tank mine, 'the enemy 
used a very effective small shane charge which they generally hurl- 
ed at the tank. They also used the charge to destroy abandoned 
tanks in front of the lines. If the hurled shape charge lodged on 
the tank, it penetrated all hull armor. 

(d) Reinforced concrete and lumber placed on tank spon- 
sons, and spare track blccK welded on turrets and front slope plates 
proved effective counter measures for both the 47 mm fire and the 
shape charges. 





rTr/tJon Beport, Iwo Jima. SerNo . 34-45, dtd 18Apr45 



ifications were 



made on M4.43 tanks as recel&'ecf 



(a) 



(b) 



Tank-in f antry telephone installed on all tanks. 
SCR 300 radio sets installed in twenty-seven (27) 



tanks . 



(c) Additional armor plate placed on forward part of 
right sponson on twenty-four (24) tanks mounting the Mechanized 
Flame Thrower E 4-5, 

(d) Modification of interior installation of fuel and 
pressure tanks of Mechanized Flame Thrower E 4-5 (24 tanks). 

(e) Substitution of modified gun for regular E 4-5 
flame gun in the twenty-four (24) tanks mounting the flame thrower, 

(f) Installation of anti-mine flails on two (2) M4A2 
tanks with dozer attachment. 

(g) Fcrt:^- <• (41.) tanks had spare track blocks spot 
welded ground the tarre'u ^.i carried in brackets on the front slope 
plate* 

(h) Forty-seven (47) tanks had one spare bogie wheel ° 
assembly on a bogie" gudgeon spot welded to the front siope plate. 

(i) On fifteen (15) tanks four 2 inch pieces of channel 
iron wore welded to the sponsons, and 1 1/2 inch soft pine was cut 
to the shape of the spensons and bolted to the channel irons. 

(j) On thirteen (13) tanks 3 1/2 inch lengths of 1/2 
inen reinforcing red T :ere ar rt welded 6 inches apart over the entire 
sponson surface. Heavy 1 1/2 inch wire mesh cut to fit the spon- 
son was slipped over the wtJced rods, and another identical piece 
of mesh was welded to thr r-ds 2 1/2 inches from the sponson. Three 
(3) lengths of reinf or-.ing sic 1 1 were then placed along the entire 
length of the sponson between the two layers of mesh. Next, 2 inch 
oak lumber, cut to fit the sponson was bolted to 5/8 inch studs 3 
inches long welded tc the sponson and 2 inch oak was used to cover 
the bottom 'of the air space so formed. A 1-2-3 mixture of concrete 
was pourec in the sir space. This modification proved invaluable 
as it enabled the tanks so equipped to withstand shape charges, 
explosives and 47 mm AP hits on the sponsons. Tanks not equipped 



-15- 




Subject: Operation Reoert, I wo J-ima. 3er! T o . 34-45, dtdl8Ar>r45 . 

in this :;ran:r had their* soensen armor easily t>enetr?ted by 47 mm 

Dro j c c tiles and shroe cnerges. 

(k) Thr- -c (3.) tanks had installed on theirs snons-ons 
three (3) sections cf o ivvccct' filled with concrete 11/2 inch thick 
These section^ i;?re hoi it c 5 . to brackets welded on to the sponsons 
and arc r era ov able , Tin is modif ication was not as ■ effective as that 
described in (j) above. 

(1) Six (6) tanks had 1 3/4 inch lumber, cut to fit the 
stjonsens, bolted to brackets welded on the tank so as to form a 3 
inch air space. Three (3) tanks had 1/2 inch plywood affixed to 
the 8T)onscn in the seme manner* 

(m) On fifty- four (54) tanks 1 1/2 inch wire mesh was 
wrldfd. to the top of aJ 1 hatches. 

(n) On two (2) t.^nk r covery vehicles, M32B3, a cover 
and hatch w^re construct ec over the open turret. ' This modif icatior 
is necessary to oret'et the crew of the M32B3 from small arms fire 

(o) In forty-fivo (45) tanks th n 75 mm r<"Mdy box on the 
floor of the turret ;:a.' ket was r- moved, and 75 mm ready racks in- 
stalled. This mocif^c Lion permitted the carrying of approximate- 
ly twenty-five (25) net c rounds of 75 mm ammunition. 

(o) On ts-'roi.T .r.m f 21) tanks salvaged M3A1, Jettison- 
ablr, - s-lf--s :-«ling gas ta^.ks were mounted in jettison brackets 
affixed to the too r:ar cf the hull. A oioe with valve is fitted 
to the rubber tank, ?n€. 1 .-ads doxvn to the lower rear end of the 
tank rull. Th s: t' v nk6 were used to c^rry water for supported in- 
fantry. 

(q) Cn t:n (10) tanks the vision cupola of the tank 
commanders turret hrtch was rotated 45° clockwise. This allows 
the hatch to even to the rear instead of the right side, and keeps 
branches, wire coc fron, hitting the hatch. This modification 
should be incorporated in ail tanks. 

(r) Thirty- -four i o*) tanks had from three (3) to four 
(4) pieces of rod 1 inch by 9 in oh welded upright to the front 
slooe olete. The towing cabl*. is coiled around these rods, with 
one end remaining fix<,a to iho bow towing shackle, and is thus 
made mere ac .--■riblc , 



■i) Fifteen (15) tar.ks had wcode 



-le- 





Operation Report, I wo Jima. Ser : tfo . 34-45, dtd 18 tor 45 




seVt^ lj^to|f|P|fb«^h mortar, M3 barrel. It, is believed that Mar- 
ine Corps ' urlfi aJ^eXiiould design a metal olug : for this Purpose. 
The plug is to prevent the enemy from drooping grenades or explos- 
ives into the mortar barrel, 

(t) On sixteen (16) tanks the tank commander's peris- 
cope was lengthened, from 3 to 5 inches to gj/ve increa&ed vision. 

(u) Eighteen (18) tanks had their deck escape hatch 
modified by cutting the hatch in two, hinging it to the deck armor 
and securing it from the inside. 

(v) Six (6) other modifications were made on some tanks, 
but there are only minor differences between these modifications 
and others already described* 

4. This organization was provided with an adequate 

number of maps anci other intelligence da.ta for the Iwo Jima oper- 
ation. Due to the great inaccuracy of the basic map, however; it 
was of little use in reconnaissance or target designation. Since 
it is extremely important for tank units to know as much detail 
as possible about terrain well in advance of feasable foot reconn- 
aissance limits, it is recommended' that tank units be furnished 
daily (or as the progress of the attack dictates) the latest avail- 
able, low-altitude, oblique aerial photographs with the target 
square system over printed.. Beach conditions, as reported by UDT 
personnel, proved very inaccurate, however; if sufficient time had 
been allotted to Tank Battalion Beach Reconnaissance Teams, prior 
to the dispatching of the LSM's, it is believed that muoh of the 
difficulty encountered from soft sand could have been avoided. 



5. 



Communications for the Iwo Jima operation were exc- 



ellent except for a general disregard for communication security. 
It is believed this disregard stems from three sources: Many rad- 
io operators were line duty personnel* they had received very little 
communication training; all hands were relatively unfamiliar with 
new type radio equipment used during the operation. Satisfactory 
direct communication between assault tanks and assault infantry was 
provided by 3CR-300 (AN/VRC-3) radios within command tanks, and by 
the tank-infantry telephone system installed in each tank. In this 
connection, it is recommended that all tanks be equipped with SCR- 
300 radios to prevent the loss of necessary communication which 
occurs when a command tank is disabled. Command tanks were made 

conspicuous by the AN/VRC-3 double antennae installation. The 

■ * -. *•,-»• 
i . . . i ... 

• - - " ' * ' -17- ' ' 




mums.- 

Subject: Operation Report, I wo Jima, Ser^ T o. 34-45, dtd 18Apr45. 



system of radio nets (circuits) anc frequencies assigned proved 
adequate. Highly satisfactory radio maintenance and repair was 
carried on within the battalion. This organization, with 107 radio 
equipments and with five control stations, which require the con- 
tinuous watches of well-trained operators, is authorized (see ref- 
erence (c) only four (4) CP' radio operators. Reference (c) auth- 
orized no message center- or wire section personnel so line duty men 
have to be trained for these sections, and removed from their normal 
jobs. The SCR-510 radio equipment when employed as an SCR-509 port 
able field 'set lacks a satisfactory pack -carry for ultra-portable 
("walkie-talkie") operation. It is recommended that a suitable pack 
carry for the radio v transmitting and receiving equipment BC-620 be 
designed. It is further recommended that a cord CD-509 be used to 
permit the' battery case CS- 79 to be carried in the left hand. The 
communications range (in, miles) of the SCR-510 radio equipment em- 
ployed in vehicular operation will probably prove insufficient for 
liaison -purposes in a moving situation. It is recommended that 
the Tables of Basic Allowances be changed to provide one (1) SCR- 
508 radio equipment per Tank Company and. two (2) SCR-508 radio equip- 
ments for Headquarters and Service Company. It is further recommend 
ed that suitable 'dynarr.otcrs and' mounts be provided for 12-volt veh- 
icular operation of the above radios. The use of 4x4 1/4 'ton truck? 
to transport, 'vehicular ra :lio sets proved- unsatisfactory at Iwo Jima 
due to volcanic ash in vhl eh vehicles bogged down even when equip- 
ped with chains. It is recommended that the Tables of Basic Allow- 
ances be changed to provide one cargo carrier M-29C (weasel) per 
do mo any. It is further recommended that these weasels be equipped 
with 12-volt power sources. • The BA-70 or BA-80 battery-packs are 
the only suitable types of power sources for ultra -port able oper- 
ation of the SCR-300 radio equipment. In a tank (equipped with 
stor^ere batteries) a vibrator power supply would serve to eliminate 
the numerous disadvantages of battery-pack operation. It is there- 
fore recommended that a rugged 6, 12 and. 24 volt input vibrator 
power unit for SCR--300 radio equipment be designed. The careful' 
equipping and stocking of a radio maintenance trailer for each 
company enabled this bat tall ion to do its own radio repair work. No 
signal equipment from the Fourth Tank Battalion was turned in to 
the Division Signal Rop.-,ir Section. This Battalion's Communication 
Section was able to absist the Third and Fifth Tank Battalions in 
radio maintenance work. Without the maintenance trailers this could 
not have been accompLi shed . It is recommended that a standard rad- . 
io maintenance trailer be designed and that the Tables Of Organiza- 
tion be revised to provide one'(l) per company, 

6. As stated before all tanks of this organization were 

embarked in LSM's at the base camp. All tanks beached safely, in 
spite of all LSM's receiving many artillery and mortar hits. LSIV 
are probably the best normal means for lan| ttto|g ^|}k6f| J5l|f*M 



difficulties .present themselves-: 



>18- 





^r^'icu Record, Iwo Jima. SerNo . 34-45, dtd 18 Apr 45 



( a) Due to tni LSM-s small size and its uncovered tank 
deck, it trkeo a great deal of siDrpy, and some sea, aboard even in 
relatively c^lm waters, In spite of liberal and frequent applicat- 
ions of rust preventive, considerable rust and deterioration results 
to the suspension system. 

(b) The LSI' is an extremely rough rider, even in little 
sea wpy, °nd most of the embarked troops were se s -sick a e-ood p»rt 
of the" time. Quarters for troops are cramped with no space avail- 
able for school or exercise. Health, combat efficiency and morale 
suffered as a result. 

(c) Due to the fact that LSM's travel in the tractor 
groups, briefing, conferences, coordination- and liaison between tank 
and infantry units are rendered very difficult. It is believed that 
most of these difficulties could be overcome by transporting tanks 



from the base to the moi 
LGM leaded) or even L3T 
the final, .short move t; 



t forward staging area in AF's. LSD's 
s and then transferring them 
. the objective. 



to 



LSM ' s 



(not 
for 



7. Supplier in Class I, II and IV were adequate through- 

out the operation. On ~cg plus Ten (10) days a fifty (50) per cent 
allowance of clothing wras issued to troops. Individual equipment . 
lost or destroyed, was r, p"' eM shed the same day. On Dog plus Twenty 
one (21) days clothing was issued to twenty-five (25) per cent of 
the troops in the greatest need* The Battalion was subsisted' on M K H 
rations for the first two days and on "C ,s rations and some 10-IN-ONE 
through Dog plus Sixteen (15) days 
portable flyproef galleys were set 
ter. an. inspection by the Battalion 
Ammunition, as usual, wps plentiful 
superch a r g e . - « q 
mal charge HS 



On Dog plus Seventeen (17) days, 
up in each company area, and af- 
Surgeon, rations were issued, 
with the exception of 75 mm HE 
As a result thie organization was forced to use nor- 
whien is normally used in the 75 mm tank gun only for 



indirect' fire missions, The following ammunition was expended by 
the Fourth T»nk Battalion during the operation: 



Caliber .30, "celt ~ J 

75 mm gun, HE, supra- charge '*/Y 48 fuse- 

75 mm sun, £>C, with BD fuse ^6aAl 

75 mm gun, HE, normal- charge ------ 

75' mm y\x^ . ' T P. 



316, 575 rounds. 

1, 895 rounds. 

1, 395 rounds. 

' 3, 282 rounds. 

1, 472 rounds. 



-19- 



MASSIF 





Subject : 



Operation Report. Iwo Jima. SerNo . 34-45, dtd 18Aor45. 



Mo accurate count was made of caliber .45 ball or ^^Xibcr s . 50 
ammunition expended, but very few rounds were fired* I small num- 
ber of T 105 fus..s were expanded « 



8. Cue to the rugged terrain encountered on Iwo, or- 

thodox infantry-tank tactics had to be abandoned. Tank tactics 
were improvised, end in many cases basic principles of. employment 
were disregarded. This was never done b- cause of ignorance of 
fundamentals; it was done because the tactical situation warrant- 
ed certain calculated risks* Tank units ware e*ger to support the 
infentry,, and they did everything physically and mechanically poss- 
ible to furnish that supppr t„ If it is certain that tank support 
of infantry and vice versa was less on Iwo than in previous operat- 
ions, it is equally certain that the terrain encountered made this 
situation a foregone conclusion. Errors were made by tank units 
and by the infantry units they were supporting, but these errors 
were realized: at the time/ r nd corrective measures were immediate- 
ly ini tie-ted. Some tactical errors were easily traceable to the 



loss of so 
t alien. 



many key personnel in both the RCT's and the Tank Bat- 



9. Experience gained on Iwo Jima, weighed with previous 

combat lessons, justifies the following additional comments and rec- 
ommendations. 



(a) Tank, -.rcy, medium, M4A3 should be replaced by Tank 
Army, he*vy, M 26 (also known as Tank, Army, medium T 26, T 26-E1 
and General Pershing). k4 series tanks are extremely vulnerable 
to 4? ram AT fire, magnetic mines, shape charges and field artillery. 
This is especially true in operations against a well manned, heavily 
fortified position, or in a slow moving* situation over difficult 
terrain where the YA loses its maneuverability. The gun 75 mm M3, 
Tank, tfcr- primary arr.ament of the YA. series tank is not effective 



against well constructed reinforced concrete positions. 



The ¥4 

series t»nk, with its increased weight from many modifications and 
its narrow track and bogie- volute suspension system has to much 
ground pressure to successfully negotiate loose sand or heavy go- 
ing. The M26 presents the following advantages over the M4. 



(1) It is shorter, wid 
lower sillouettej in spite of this, it 
ional weight being caused by increased 
evident that K4 series tanks can not safely 
this increased weight wouxd not effect th 
phibious Operations* 

-20- 



r and lower, presenting a 
weighs 44 tons, the add it- 
armor* Since it is now 
be loaded in LCM ! s 
26 in 




_ ^^q^^^n Report, I wo Jima. SerNo.34-45, dtdl8Apr45. 

(2) Till' wJ^wjtr^els at the £$#3 peH. ; .as the M4, 
the former 1 s design shourd give- it greater 'maneuverability and 

action. ' 

(3) The primary armament of the M 26 is a high vel- 
ocity 90 n'j 13 gun, which should be much more effective against fort- 
ified positions ^nd enemy ^rmor than the 75 mm. 

(4) The M 26 has torsion "bar suspension with six 
(6) l c, rge independently sprung fogies and very wide tracks which 
should give it excellent floatation. 

(5) The K 26 has a rear drive sprocket. The H4 f s 
prominent front drive sprocket is very vulnerable to shell fire 
and is easily damaged in breaching obstacles. 







(b) The number of tanks in a platoon should.be increased 
to four (4) including one Bulldozer, tank mounting. This would en- 
able the Platcon Leader to employ his platoon as sections in assaul 
on fortified positions. The- dozer is invaluable, and is essential 
in ho-vy going. The present allowance of one dozer per company is 
woefully inadequate, 

(c) The GB. ITT ""iams throw c r was probably the most val- 
uable single voapon emp^oy^d on I wo Jims in spite of considerable 
mechanic-1 failures. It is recommpnded that a four (4) tank Pla- 
toon of CB, T -FI or ^oni'; .similar fir me throwing tank be added to 

TO F-?6. It is further recommended that appropriate maintenance 
and servicing equipment; toois and spare parts be provided^ The 
present allowance of E 4-5 flame throwers is adequate and would 
lend itself well to the platoon organization mentioned in (b) above, 
providing one E 4-5 per section. 

(d) One tank-mount-, d ?<.2 inch rocket launcher should be 
added to TO F-76 for reduction of fortified positions and tank ob- 
stacles. N 

(e) The CinCPCA unit of fire is inadequate in that it 
contains too little HE ^n-d too much AP . Most firing as in all past 
operations, w?? dene with HE „ It is recommended that the unit of 
fire for a mec'ium tenk should be: 



-21- 



UNCLASS1FIP 



61 U 9CS00 S69L C 



S* 'H1UOMN3AV3T 1U0J 

Auvuan Hoavasau snuv aaNiawoo 



II A 



Subject: 



Operation Report, Iwo Jlma. ScrNo . 34-45,dtdl8Apr45 . 



75 rounds - 75 " mm HE, super charge,,* WjfM *48 fuse. 

25 rounds - 75 mm AFC, t J/BD fuse K&Sil. 

£0 rounds - 75 mm Cannister. 

10 rounds - 75 mm *T (Smoke). 

If cannister is not available, then the recommended unit is» 

90 rounds - 75 ram HE, supercharge, V/M 48 fuse. 
30 rounds - 75 mm AFC, V/BD fuse 
10 rounds - 75 mm W (Smoke)* 

Present --.11 o winces of caliber .30, caliber ,45 end caliber .50 
pre adequate. Norm?.! charge KE for indirect fire elusions could be 
obtained from a sin? 11 supply in division dumps when needed. Con- 
crete fuse T-105 should be included in the tank unit of fire. 



ion should 
ilitpte re 
retrievers 
available . 



but were n 
adapter st 
for tank e 
bursts. I 
ed and ins 
reconnaiss 



(f) Headquarters and Service Company maintenance sect- 
be eviuiyped with a tank recovery vehicle M32B3 to fac- 

cover and repair. In many instances on Iwo Jima two 
were needed on recovery missions, and two were seldom 

i 

(g) Deep water fording kits were installed on all tanks, I 
ot needed as all vehicles had a dry ramp on landing. The 
= chg, which ri .■rained on the tanks, afforded protection 
ne;ines and radxa&ors from near miss mortar and artillery 
t is recommend ;d ch?t deep water fording kits be furnish- 
tailed prior to evrry .amphibious operation whether or not 
rnce and hydrogr^ohic information indicate their necessity 

'(h) It is r:c oil Tended that tank battalions be authorized 
four (4) LVT 3's on the basis of one per company to replace four (4) 
2 1/2 ton 6x6 trucks. This would give tank" units a vehicle cap- 
able of rearming and refueling them ov:r very Trough terrain or loose 
sand, and before b:ach and. road conditions could be improved for 
wheeled vehicles. 

(i) One lieutenant, Reconnaissance and Liaison Officer, 
should' be added to TO ?-76 In order to properly coordinate in- 
fantry-tank attacks it is essential that a tank liaison officer 
be with each assault BlT and' at the ROT CP. The addition of . one 
officer would make this possible, Th_ : Company Executive Officer 
->uld be- sont to the OP, and the He connais^nce ' and liaison Officer 



the Maintenance 
*ticn. 



Jffic'r to each of the BLT 1 s in a normal attack 



(j) The Commanding Officer of a tank 
r CrJor fnd his executive officer 

-22- 



Co ran any should hold